WASHINGTON (CNN) - The House of Representatives on Thursday voted to roll back President Bush's 2001 restrictions on embryonic stem-cell research, but by a margin short of the two-thirds needed to override a promised veto.
The House vote would allow researchers to obtain stem cells from embryos created for in vitro fertilization that would otherwise be discarded by fertility clinics. Thursday's 247-176 vote sends the bill to the White House, where Bush has said he would veto it.
Current federal policy, which Bush put in place in 2001, bars the use of federal funding for work that would destroy a human embryo. The president used one of only two vetoes of his administration to date to kill a similar bill in 2006, and he announced after the vote that he will veto the measure that passed Thursday.
"I am disappointed the leadership of Congress recycled an old bill that would simply overturn our country's carefully balanced policy on embryonic stem cell research," he said. "If this bill were to become law, American taxpayers would for the first time in our history be compelled to support the deliberate destruction of human embryos. Crossing that line would be a grave mistake."